Inspiration Software, the developer of the popular Inspiration mind mapping software program, recently announced updates to its web-based Webspiration mind mapping service. These improvements add functionality to an already solid toolset, and help to give it a greater focus on the needs of business users.
Here’s what’s new in Webspiration:
Add your own images: You can now add graphics and images from the files on your computer or from a URL as a topic, a symbol and even into a note. I tried inserting a graphic from a URL; the application quickly fetched it and inserted it into my map, along with grab handles that I could use to resize it. This new functionality worked great, but it would be even better if Webspiration enabled you to drag and drop images from another browser window (I tried it in Internet Explorer 7 – it didn’t work).
A redesigned starter screen gives you fast access to the documents and tools you use most often, including links to recently opened and updated files, and recently invited people. In addition, a new “templates/examples” button gives you access to an expanded library of templates and examples you can use to jump start your projects. Many of these are clearly business oriented, covering applications such as:
- Developing an action plan,
- Analyzing causes and effects,
- Developing a job description,
- Taking meeting minutes,
- Conducting a performance review, and
- Performing a SWOT analysis (strengths/weaknesses/opportunities/threats)
There are over 35 templates and 7 examples in all. Each one is professionally designed and contain brief instructions. I predict that these resources will go a long way toward making Webspiration a valuable tool for business collaboration.
Improved chat tool: An improved chat tool integrated within the Webspiration interface lets you generate a complete and accurate log of conversations between map collaborators. All chat activity for a map document is permanently recorded and date- and time-stamped, and all document users can view the complete record. At the bottom of the chat window, a small icon gives you access to cut, copy and paste options for chat text, so you can incorporate it into Word documents and other reports – nice!
Although Inspiration Software has focused its flagship desktop mind mapping software on the education market in recent years, it appears that the developer is giving business users a nod with this well-designed web-based mapping application. It’s good to see that they’re continuing to add features and updates to it. They’re doing a great job!